Elon Musk's Past Tweets Offer Clues About Twitter's New Owner

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He whitethorn beryllium bully with rockets and electrical cars, but don’t crook to Elon Musk for nationalist wellness predictions.

“Probably adjacent to zero caller cases successful US excessively by extremity of April,” the world’s richest antheral tweeted astir COVID-19 successful March 2020, conscionable arsenic the pandemic was ramping up.

It’s 1 of galore tweets that connection a glimpse into the caput of Twitter’s caller owner and moderator successful chief. Playful, assertive and sometimes reckless, Musk’s past tweets amusement however helium has utilized societal media to tout his businesses, punch backmost astatine critics and burnish his marque arsenic a brash billionaire who is unafraid to talk his mind.

Musk joined Twitter successful 2009 and present has much than 112 cardinal followers — the 3rd astir of immoderate relationship aft erstwhile president Barack Obama and Canadian vocalist Justin Bieber. He had long mused astir purchasing the platform earlier the $ 44 cardinal woody was finalized past week.

Musk hasn’t elaborate the changes helium intends to marque astatine Twitter, though helium wasted nary clip successful making wide layoffs. But helium has said helium wants to marque Twitter a haven for escaped speech. He’s said helium disagrees with the platform’s determination to prohibition ex-President Donald Trump for inciting unit up of the Jan. 6, 2021 battle connected the U.S. Capitol.

“I anticipation that adjacent my worst critics stay connected Twitter, due to the fact that that is what escaped code means,” Musk tweeted earlier this twelvemonth erstwhile helium announced his volition to bargain the platform.

As the CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, Musk uses his Twitter relationship to marque concern announcements and beforehand his enterprises. He muses astir exertion and trade, but has besides posted jokes astir women’s breasts and erstwhile compared Canada’s premier curate to Hitler. He regularly weighs successful connected planetary events, arsenic helium did successful March 2020 erstwhile helium tweeted that “The coronavirus pandemic is dumb.”

That aforesaid month, helium tweeted that children were mostly immune from the microorganism and predicted that cases would soon disappear.

Musk has besides utilized his Twitter relationship to measurement successful different large quality events — with mixed results.

This fall, Musk infuriated leaders successful Ukraine erstwhile helium went connected Twitter to interval a imaginable bid deal. Under Musk’s plan, Russia would get to support Crimea, which it seized from Ukraine successful 2014, and Ukraine would person to driblet its plans to articulation NATO.

Musk besides suggested that radical surviving successful different areas illegally annexed by Russia should ballot connected whether Russia oregon Ukraine should get power implicit the territories — a determination that Ukraine supporters said would reward Russia for its amerciable aggression.

“The information present is that successful the sanction of ‘free speech,’ Musk volition crook backmost the timepiece and marque Twitter into a much potent motor of hatred, divisiveness, and misinformation,” said Paul Barrett, a disinformation researcher and the lawman manager of New York University’s Stern Center for Business and Human Rights.

Stern singled retired Musk’s comments astir Ukraine arsenic peculiarly concerning. “This is not going to beryllium pretty,” helium said.

Just days aft purchasing Twitter Musk waded into yet different firestorm erstwhile helium posted a nexus to an nonfiction advancing a bizarre conspiracy mentation astir the onslaught connected the hubby of U.S. Speaker Nancy Pelosi. The nonfiction suggested that Paul Pelosi and his assailant were lovers, adjacent though authorities said the fishy confessed to targeting the talker and did not cognize her husband.

Musk aboriginal deleted the tweet without explanation.

Musk has agelong utilized the megaphone of his Twitter relationship to punch backmost astatine critics oregon radical helium opposes, specified arsenic erstwhile helium attacked a diver moving to rescue boys trapped successful a cave successful Thailand by calling him a “pedo,” abbreviated for pedophile. The diver had antecedently mocked Musk’s connection to usage a sub to rescue the boys. Musk, who won a defamation suit filed by the diver, aboriginal said helium ne'er intended “pedo” to beryllium interpreted arsenic “pedophile.”

Three days earlier Elon Musk agreed to bargain Twitter, the world’s richest antheral tweeted a photograph of Bill Gates and utilized a crude intersexual word portion making a gag astir his belly.

Earlier this twelvemonth helium criticized the Twitter enforcement successful complaint of the platform’s legal, argumentation and spot divisions. In effect to his tweets astir the executive, galore of Musk’s followers piled connected with misogynistic and racist attacks, successful summation to calls for Musk to occurrence her erstwhile his acquisition of Twitter was approved.

Musk fired the enforcement connected time one.

Musk’s usage of Twitter has astatine times led to problems for his ain companies. In 1 August 2018 tweet, for instance, Musk asserted that helium had the backing to instrumentality Tesla backstage for $420 a share, though a tribunal has ruled that it wasn’t true. That led to an SEC probe that Musk is inactive fighting.

Last twelvemonth different national agency, the National Labor Relations Board, ordered Musk to delete a tweet that officials said illegally threatened to chopped banal options for Tesla employees who joined the United Auto Workers union.

Those tweets helped cement Musk’s estimation arsenic a brash outsider. But that doesn’t mean helium is equipped to tally a societal media level with much than 200 cardinal users, said Jennifer Grygiel, a Syracuse University prof who studies societal media. Grygiel has assigned Musk’s tweets arsenic speechmaking worldly for students.

“Look astatine the feed: It’s each implicit the place. It’s erratic. At times it’s beauteous extreme,” Grygiel said. “It paints him arsenic immoderate benignant of rebel person who volition instrumentality power of the nationalist quadrate to prevention it. That is simply a story helium has constructed.”

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